When I first started becoming interested in landscape photography, it seemed natural for me to visit Acadia National Park and use it as subject matter. I am lucky to live within about an hour of the park, and it truly is special to be able to spend time there.
My early days in landscape photography involved using a non-digital camera and good old slide film. I had no clue what I was doing, so when a photographer friend of mine told me to use Fuji Velvia for landscapes, I did. He told me that the greens and blues would be quite saturated, and that there was nothing like getting your film back from processing and seeing it on the light table. He was right, very right.
Slide film was quite unforgiving when it came to getting the exposure correct, and many of my earliest attempts did not quite work out. I can recall shooting several rolls of 36 exposures, the outcome of which were quite a few images that were either too dark, or too light. Every now and then I got one right… more than likely due to luck rather than expertise, though I soon learned the value of bracketing for exposure. Using a digital camera today, you can preview your photographs (or even check the histogram) to determine if you have a correct exposure, but in the days of slide film you had to really know what you were doing, or wait until your images returned from processing to see how you did – though the anticipation of waiting for a couple of days was always exciting to me.
The image below is of my absolute favorite place… Monument Cove in Acadia National Park. It was shot on Velvia slide film, and I think I used a cheap Cokin graduated neutral density filter to try to balance out the difference in exposure between the rocks and the sky. The sun rises to the left of this scene sometimes making for spectacular early morning light, but on this mid to late Sunday afternoon in summer I was fortunate to get a combination of shade from the clouds above, and warmth from the sun off to the right and out of the frame.